Subconjunctival Hemorrhage (Bleeding in Eye)
What is a Subconjunctival Hemorrhage?
- The conjunctiva is the thin, moist, transparent membrane that covers the white part of the eye (called the sclera) and the inside of the eyelids.
- The conjunctiva is the outermost protective coating of the eyeball.
- The conjunctiva contains nerves and many small blood vessels.
- These blood vessels are usually barely visible but become larger and more visible if the eye is inflamed.
- These blood vessels are somewhat fragile, and their walls may break easily, resulting in a subconjunctival hemorrhage (bleeding under the conjunctiva).
- A subconjunctival hemorrhage appears as a bright red or dark red patch on the sclera.
Subconjunctival Hemorrhage Causes
Most subconjunctival hemorrhages are spontaneous without an obvious cause for this bleeding from the conjunctival vessels. Often, a person may discover a subconjunctival hemorrhage on awakening and looking in the mirror. Most spontaneous subconjunctival hemorrhages are first noticed by another person seeing a red spot on your eye.
The following can occasionally result in a spontaneous subconjunctival hemorrhage:
Subconjunctival hemorrhage can also be non-spontaneous and result from a severe eye infection, trauma to the head or eye, or after eye or eyelid surgery.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 12/2/2015
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